Havant eye derby double

Havant have a south-coast derby double in their sights as they prepare to entertain struggling Brighton at Hooks Lane in London one south tomorrow (2pm).

Friday, 16th December 2016, 7:30 am
Updated Saturday, 17th December 2016, 9:40 am
Havant head coach Will Knight. Picture: Mick Young (151339-21)

Will Knight’s side are not only second in the table but are defending an unbeaten home record.

The visitors have only won once so far this season.

And in the first meeting between the two teams, Havant returned home with a confident 27-0 win under their belts.

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Knight was encouraged by that early win, which helped lay the foundations for the improvements his troops have made since.

‘We had to be pleased with our win at Brighton earlier this season,’ said the head coach.

‘It was a tough game and the conditions were quite difficult.

‘That day demonstrated we had real strength across the squad.

‘And it showed this could be an exciting season for us.

‘Our tries in the first half of the game were very good, although, at times we were guilty of kicking too much ball away.

‘When Brighton threw everything at us there were no cracks in our defensive line.

‘To be able to do that and sustain that level of concentration for almost the whole of the second half was amazing.’

Havant have been impressive at home – with the players responding brilliantly to the vociferous partisan support.

Although the visitors have only managed one win so far this season, Knight will be making sure his Hooks Lane side don’t underestimate the challenge they face.

If they maintain the level of performance from recent games, however, the home side should carry too much firepower for the Sussex outfit.

United Services face a crucial London three south west relegation battle against Bognor at Burnaby Road.

Chairman Paul Nelson is hoping a gathering of ex-players for a pre-match lunch can inspire the current side to a crucial win.

The Burnaby Road outfit last tasted victory in September – when they defeated tomorrow’s opponents 30-15.

However, a victory would see United Services leapfrog above their Sussex opponents and out of the relegation zone.

In Hampshire two, Southsea Nomads journey to take on Lymington Mariners in the New Forest.

The Furze Lane outfit are looking to end a five-game losing run.